PEDIATRIC DENTAL SERVICES

Preventative Dentistry:

 All children should have preventative care appointments, including an exam, cleaning, fluoride treatment and if needed, x-rays.  Doing this twice a year is recommended, although some children who are at a higher risk for cavities may need to come every three months to stay healthy. Preventive care and education includes proper brushing, flossing, and eating habits, ideal fluoride and other remineralization therapies, SDF, and the use of pit and fissure sealants. At these visits, our doctors and team can monitor any changes in your child’s oral health and diet and be able to make recommendations for any treatment needs. The doctors will also evaluate your child's dental and facial development and identify any problems.  Our goal is to provide individualized guidance and support and to help your child have great oral health for a lifetime.

 

Restorative Dentistry:

Our first priority is maintaining a healthy smile. Restorative treatment may include fillings, crowns, root canal therapy, extractions, silver diamine fluoride (SDF), and space maintenance. We are committed to discussing all options before these procedures and answering all questions you may have.

 

We use the Fotona LightWalker® laser in our office for a variety of treatments.

 

The benefits of laser dentistry for children include improved precision, faster healing, less pain, reduced bleeding, and lowered infection risk. The Fotona LightWalker® laser allows our dentists to only remove the infected portion of your child’s tooth when working on a dental filling. The precision from the laser means that the neighboring teeth and tissues will be protected from damage. The laser also seals the nerve endings as it works as well as sterilizes the area instantly, this means dental anesthesia may not be needed for your child’s visit.

 

Some of the dental procedures possible with our Fotona laser include:

 

·         Frenectomy and revisions

·         Dental fillings

·         Treating gum inflammation and gum disease

·         Treatment of ulcers and cold sores

·         Sterilization of the tooth grooves prior to sealant placement

·         Pulpotomy

·         Gingival shaping and removal of excess tissue for braces

·         Exposure of teeth to help with permanent tooth eruption

·         Biopsies

·         Healing with photobiomodulation after trauma or TMD

·         Snoring and sleep apnea treatment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Digital X-Rays:

 Our use of digital x-ray technology reduces your child’s radiation exposure by up to 90% and completely eliminates the use of chemicals. It’s better for children and the environment.

 

Digital x-rays allow the doctor to get a view of your child’s teeth and jaws that she can’t see with her eyes. They help diagnose cavities between your child’s teeth at an early stage often before the cavity breaks the tooth. When caught early, cavities can be treated much more easily, sometimes even with a few small changes to your home brushing and flossing routines (homecare).

In addition to detecting cavities, x-rays can detect un-erupted teeth, help diagnoses after trauma, and evaluate growth and development, including potential orthodontic needs. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends x-rays every six months to help detect cavities that can’t be seen by the naked eye, but the frequency is often less depending on your child’s risk for cavities. The amount of radiation by using digital x-rays is very minimal. Moreover, our team uses the utmost caution in protecting and minimizing your child’s exposure to radiation by using lead aprons and up-to-date equipment.

 

Frenectomies:

A frenum or frenulum is a small piece of tissue that attaches either the upper lip to the gum tissue or the tongue to the floor of the mouth. In some children, this tissue is attached too tightly or too close to the teeth or tip of the tongue, creating a pull on the gums and surrounding the teeth that can cause a nursing or periodontal problem.  These tethered oral tissues can cause a child to be “tongue-tied,” preventing full movement of the tongue. The latter can result in nursing problems, feeding issues, difficult and/or delayed speech, as well as sleep disordered breathing.  A procedure called a frenectomy may be done to help ease the tension that prevents full movement of the lip or tongue. This simple procedure is easily done in our office, and can usually be accommodated the same day as a child’s consult appointment for infants with nursing challenges.

 

We use Light Scapel Technology for frenectomies in our office.

 

 

Your can learn more about Light Scapel technology here.

 

Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF):

  • The use of Silver Diamine Fluoride in dentistry has been well documented for its safe and successful ability to help arrest tooth decay.  Its application is a conservative approach for the treatment of active decay.  Our doctors can discuss if this is a good option for your child’s care.
  • The initial application of 38% Silver Diamine Fluoride will be applied to appropriate teeth in very small amounts using a micro brush or by flossing it between the affected teeth.
  • We offer and recommend a second application, free of charge.
  •  

Contraindications:

  • Silver Allergy (very rare)
  •  

Possible Side Effects:

  • When Silver Diamine Fluoride has been applied, the treated place on the tooth that has decay will turn dark (usually black). This is an indication that the decay in the tooth is arresting/remineralizing.
  • If Silver Diamine Fluoride comes in contact with skin and/or gums, temporary dark discoloration will occur but will go away as the skin rejuvenates.  Our team takes precautions such as applying Vaseline to and around the lips and using a patient napkin to protect clothing. We may also drape your child's chair and working area to prevent stains on our equipment.
  • If Silver Diamine Fluoride is placed on a tooth that has a tooth-colored restoration or demineralized enamel (white lesions), discoloration may occur.

 

WHEN DO WE USE SDF?

  1. To help stop the progression of cavities, but also sometimes, 2. to delay needing to treat a tooth that may or may not need a restoration later.  SDF will only work with amazing homecare and attention to diet and snacking.  We are arresting the activity of the bacteria destroying the tooth and putting mineral back into the tooth with SDF, but the process that caused the cavity in the first place has to be stopped as well.  Great brushing, flossing, and using prescription-strength toothpaste will increase the effectiveness of the SDF and lower the chance of needing a traditional restoration in the future.

 

WHAT TO DO AT HOME TO MAKE IT WORK:

Please only drink water between meals and minimize snacking. When snacking, avoid carbohydrates. The natural bacteria in our mouths produce acid from carbs preventing you from remineralizing (reversing) the cavity. See our suggested snack list for the best snack options.

 

REVERSING CAVITIES BETWEEN TEETH:

Teeth must be flossed twice a day, in addition to brushing after meals.  The surfaces we are treating must stay clean, or more mineral loss (the cavities) will continue. We also recommend leaving a pinhead amount of prescription-strength toothpaste in the treated area overnight. We will show you how little to use.

 

Snack Hints for Parents:

Grocery shopping can be a feat.  Successfully grocery shopping with your kids in tow is an even bigger feat, especially when you’re getting requests for sugar-frosted, sticky, hyper-inducing treats!

 

As a parent, you desire to achieve a harmonious balance - fill your kid’s tummy with healthy, nutrient-packed food and enjoy some “treats” in moderation along the way.  Often, the hardest time to accomplish this first task is during snack times.

 

You’re caught suddenly by the all too familiar, “I’m hungry” line (only an hour after lunch, no less...sound familiar?) and you find yourself on the spot trying to find something that will satisfy their appetite.

 

But what kind of snacks are considered healthy and not so healthy when it comes to your child’s teeth?  Some of the answers may surprise you.

 

We have compiled a list of snack choices below that guide you toward teeth-friendly choices and those to limit/avoid.  No, we’re not totally out of touch with reality, but we do keep a “nice” and “naughty” list when it comes to snacks.

 

ENCOURAGE THESE:

 

Snacks to encourage that are usually safe for teeth:

Fresh Fruit:  Apples, Oranges, Bananas, Peaches, Plums, Nectarines, Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Grapes, Kiwi, Cantaloupe, Honeydew, Mango, Papaya, Grapefruit, Cherries

Fresh Vegetables:  Baby Carrots, Red & Green Pepper Slices, Celery, Radishes, Cucumbers Slices, Fennel Slices, Broccoli and Cauliflower Florets, Edamame

Cheeses/Proteins:  Meat Slices, Hard-Boiled Eggs, Hard Cheese, String Cheese, Cheese Cubes

Party Snacks:  Nuts, Fruit with Yogurt Dip, Popcorn, Pickles, Olives, dark chocolate

Lunch box items:  Sandwiches, cheese, fruit, hardboiled eggs, sliced veggies, peanut butter with celery or apples, nuts, yogurt (be careful with sweeteners in yogurt), cucumbers and hummus, popcorn, water bottle

 

AVOID THESE:

 

Snacks that are harmful to teeth and promote cavities*:

Candy: Gummy Candies, Chewy candies (now and laters, taffy, sour patch kids), Hard Candies, Fudge, Caramels, Caramel Popcorn, Lollipops, Peanut Brittle, Candy Bars, Toffee, know that sour and gummy candies are the worst combination for dental health

Snack Foods: Goldfish, Potato Chips, Dried Fruit (including raisins), Sweetened Cereals, Soda, granola bars, fruit snacks, juice

Lunch Box Items: Fruit Filled Bars, Snack Cakes, Crackers (including goldfish, grahams, cheez-its), fruit juice

 

Desserts - We know they’ll eat them!  Just choose wisely.

Safer: Ice Cream, Cake, Pie, Popsicles, Jello, Pudding

Less safe: cookies, candy bars, granola bars, fruit leathers, marshmallows

 

*Please note that the best time to give these foods is at the end of a meal.  Your child has already been eating carbohydrates, and of course, you will be more likely to brush the bad carbohydrates off right after a meal.

** Consuming drinks other than water between meals is like having a snack.  Try to encourage drinks like milk and juice to accompany mealtime instead of snack time.  You'll hear us say "Water anytime, milk with meals, juices only on special occasions!"

 

Helpful links:

 

Infant and Toddler Nutrition | Nutrition | CDC

 

The Use and Misuse of Fruit Juice in Pediatrics | American Academy of Pediatrics

 

Sedation Dentistry:

Sedation dentistry refers to the use of sedation during dental treatment. Our office offers nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and general anesthesia at Watauga Medical Center.  In the future, we plan to expand our services to include oral conscious sedation and IV sedation in the office.

 

A consultation will help us determine which option is best.

 

Emergency Treatment:

While our goal is to prevent dental emergencies, we understand that the need for urgent dental care is sometimes necessary and can be a stressful experience for both parents and children. We strive to handle dental emergencies promptly and with compassion.

 

Special needs patients:

If you’re the parent or guardian of a child with disabilities, you’ll appreciate the support, skill and compassion found with our doctors and our office. We can help put your child on the path of good oral health with a preventative dental care plan customized to fit your child’s needs.

 

Martha Hardaway, DMD, MS

Board Certified Pediatric Dentist

 

Parisa Tashakkori, DMD

Board Eligible Pediatric Dentist

 

We are here for you and your child.

Our goal is to exceed your expectations.

 

From the time your child grows their first tooth until they are ready to move on to an adult dentist, our doctors and their team will help care for and protect your child’s smile. Because children are so different from adults, we take a unique approach to every patient. We treat our patients as if they were our own and we want each visit to be a fun, educational visit.

 

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Read what our patients and their parents say about us...

I think I was more nervous than my daughter about having two baby teeth extracted. It was over so fast and the staff at Bluebird was amazing! She did so well and I would recommend them for any pediatric dentistry needs again and again and again!  HR, Google

 

My 4 year old daughter loves this office! They explain everything in a way she can understand and helps her to feel very comfortable. She’s had a tooth pulled and baby root canal at this office where they had to put her under anesthesia and she still loves to visit her dentist! Grateful for such a great group of people to grow with!  MM, Google

 

Dr P and her hygienist made my 2 year old feel comfortable and we’re so patient with her. She was scared and they did everything possible to make her trust them! 100% recommend!  MK, Google

Read more Reviews!

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Preferred Location:

Preventative Dentistry:

 All children should have preventative care appointments, including an exam, cleaning, fluoride treatment and if needed, x-rays.  Doing this twice a year is recommended, although some children who are at a higher risk for cavities may need to come every three months to stay healthy. Preventive care and education includes proper brushing, flossing, and eating habits, ideal fluoride and other remineralization therapies, SDF, and the use of pit and fissure sealants. At these visits, our doctors and team can monitor any changes in your child’s oral health and diet and be able to make recommendations for any treatment needs. The doctors will also evaluate your child's dental and facial development and identify any problems.  Our goal is to provide individualized guidance and support and to help your child have great oral health for a lifetime.

 

Restorative Dentistry:

Our first priority is maintaining a healthy smile. Restorative treatment may include fillings, crowns, root canal therapy, extractions, silver diamine fluoride (SDF), and space maintenance. We are committed to discussing all options before these procedures and answering all questions you may have.

 

We use the Fotona LightWalker® laser in our office for a variety of treatments.

 

The benefits of laser dentistry for children include improved precision, faster healing, less pain, reduced bleeding, and lowered infection risk. The Fotona LightWalker® laser allows our dentists to only remove the infected portion of your child’s tooth when working on a dental filling. The precision from the laser means that the neighboring teeth and tissues will be protected from damage. The laser also seals the nerve endings as it works as well as sterilizes the area instantly, this means dental anesthesia may not be needed for your child’s visit.

 

Some of the dental procedures possible with our Fotona laser include:

 

·         Frenectomy and revisions

·         Dental fillings

·         Treating gum inflammation and gum disease

·         Treatment of ulcers and cold sores

·         Sterilization of the tooth grooves prior to sealant placement

·         Pulpotomy

·         Gingival shaping and removal of excess tissue for braces

·         Exposure of teeth to help with permanent tooth eruption

·         Biopsies

·         Healing with photobiomodulation after trauma or TMD

·         Snoring and sleep apnea treatment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Digital X-Rays:

 Our use of digital x-ray technology reduces your child’s radiation exposure by up to 90% and completely eliminates the use of chemicals. It’s better for children and the environment.

 

Digital x-rays allow the doctor to get a view of your child’s teeth and jaws that she can’t see with her eyes. They help diagnose cavities between your child’s teeth at an early stage often before the cavity breaks the tooth. When caught early, cavities can be treated much more easily, sometimes even with a few small changes to your home brushing and flossing routines (homecare).

In addition to detecting cavities, x-rays can detect un-erupted teeth, help diagnoses after trauma, and evaluate growth and development, including potential orthodontic needs. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends x-rays every six months to help detect cavities that can’t be seen by the naked eye, but the frequency is often less depending on your child’s risk for cavities. The amount of radiation by using digital x-rays is very minimal. Moreover, our team uses the utmost caution in protecting and minimizing your child’s exposure to radiation by using lead aprons and up-to-date equipment.

 

Frenectomies:

A frenum or frenulum is a small piece of tissue that attaches either the upper lip to the gum tissue or the tongue to the floor of the mouth. In some children, this tissue is attached too tightly or too close to the teeth or tip of the tongue, creating a pull on the gums and surrounding the teeth that can cause a nursing or periodontal problem.  These tethered oral tissues can cause a child to be “tongue-tied,” preventing full movement of the tongue. The latter can result in nursing problems, feeding issues, difficult and/or delayed speech, as well as sleep disordered breathing.  A procedure called a frenectomy may be done to help ease the tension that prevents full movement of the lip or tongue. This simple procedure is easily done in our office, and can usually be accommodated the same day as a child’s consult appointment for infants with nursing challenges.

 

We use Light Scapel Technology for frenectomies in our office.

 

 

Your can learn more about Light Scapel technology here.

 

Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF):

  • The use of Silver Diamine Fluoride in dentistry has been well documented for its safe and successful ability to help arrest tooth decay.  Its application is a conservative approach for the treatment of active decay.  Our doctors can discuss if this is a good option for your child’s care.
  • The initial application of 38% Silver Diamine Fluoride will be applied to appropriate teeth in very small amounts using a micro brush or by flossing it between the affected teeth.
  • We offer and recommend a second application, free of charge.
  •  

Contraindications:

  • Silver Allergy (very rare)
  •  

Possible Side Effects:

  • When Silver Diamine Fluoride has been applied, the treated place on the tooth that has decay will turn dark (usually black). This is an indication that the decay in the tooth is arresting/remineralizing.
  • If Silver Diamine Fluoride comes in contact with skin and/or gums, temporary dark discoloration will occur but will go away as the skin rejuvenates.  Our team takes precautions such as applying Vaseline to and around the lips and using a patient napkin to protect clothing. We may also drape your child's chair and working area to prevent stains on our equipment.
  • If Silver Diamine Fluoride is placed on a tooth that has a tooth-colored restoration or demineralized enamel (white lesions), discoloration may occur.

 

WHEN DO WE USE SDF?

  1. To help stop the progression of cavities, but also sometimes, 2. to delay needing to treat a tooth that may or may not need a restoration later.  SDF will only work with amazing homecare and attention to diet and snacking.  We are arresting the activity of the bacteria destroying the tooth and putting mineral back into the tooth with SDF, but the process that caused the cavity in the first place has to be stopped as well.  Great brushing, flossing, and using prescription-strength toothpaste will increase the effectiveness of the SDF and lower the chance of needing a traditional restoration in the future.

 

WHAT TO DO AT HOME TO MAKE IT WORK:

Please only drink water between meals and minimize snacking. When snacking, avoid carbohydrates. The natural bacteria in our mouths produce acid from carbs preventing you from remineralizing (reversing) the cavity. See our suggested snack list for the best snack options.

 

REVERSING CAVITIES BETWEEN TEETH:

Teeth must be flossed twice a day, in addition to brushing after meals.  The surfaces we are treating must stay clean, or more mineral loss (the cavities) will continue. We also recommend leaving a pinhead amount of prescription-strength toothpaste in the treated area overnight. We will show you how little to use.

 

Snack Hints for Parents:

Grocery shopping can be a feat.  Successfully grocery shopping with your kids in tow is an even bigger feat, especially when you’re getting requests for sugar-frosted, sticky, hyper-inducing treats!

 

As a parent, you desire to achieve a harmonious balance - fill your kid’s tummy with healthy, nutrient-packed food and enjoy some “treats” in moderation along the way.  Often, the hardest time to accomplish this first task is during snack times.

 

You’re caught suddenly by the all too familiar, “I’m hungry” line (only an hour after lunch, no less...sound familiar?) and you find yourself on the spot trying to find something that will satisfy their appetite.

 

But what kind of snacks are considered healthy and not so healthy when it comes to your child’s teeth?  Some of the answers may surprise you.

 

We have compiled a list of snack choices below that guide you toward teeth-friendly choices and those to limit/avoid.  No, we’re not totally out of touch with reality, but we do keep a “nice” and “naughty” list when it comes to snacks.

 

ENCOURAGE THESE:

 

Snacks to encourage that are usually safe for teeth:

Fresh Fruit:  Apples, Oranges, Bananas, Peaches, Plums, Nectarines, Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Grapes, Kiwi, Cantaloupe, Honeydew, Mango, Papaya, Grapefruit, Cherries

Fresh Vegetables:  Baby Carrots, Red & Green Pepper Slices, Celery, Radishes, Cucumbers Slices, Fennel Slices, Broccoli and Cauliflower Florets, Edamame

Cheeses/Proteins:  Meat Slices, Hard-Boiled Eggs, Hard Cheese, String Cheese, Cheese Cubes

Party Snacks:  Nuts, Fruit with Yogurt Dip, Popcorn, Pickles, Olives, dark chocolate

Lunch box items:  Sandwiches, cheese, fruit, hardboiled eggs, sliced veggies, peanut butter with celery or apples, nuts, yogurt (be careful with sweeteners in yogurt), cucumbers and hummus, popcorn, water bottle

 

AVOID THESE:

 

Snacks that are harmful to teeth and promote cavities*:

Candy: Gummy Candies, Chewy candies (now and laters, taffy, sour patch kids), Hard Candies, Fudge, Caramels, Caramel Popcorn, Lollipops, Peanut Brittle, Candy Bars, Toffee, know that sour and gummy candies are the worst combination for dental health

Snack Foods: Goldfish, Potato Chips, Dried Fruit (including raisins), Sweetened Cereals, Soda, granola bars, fruit snacks, juice

Lunch Box Items: Fruit Filled Bars, Snack Cakes, Crackers (including goldfish, grahams, cheez-its), fruit juice

 

Desserts - We know they’ll eat them!  Just choose wisely.

Safer: Ice Cream, Cake, Pie, Popsicles, Jello, Pudding

Less safe: cookies, candy bars, granola bars, fruit leathers, marshmallows

 

*Please note that the best time to give these foods is at the end of a meal.  Your child has already been eating carbohydrates, and of course, you will be more likely to brush the bad carbohydrates off right after a meal.

** Consuming drinks other than water between meals is like having a snack.  Try to encourage drinks like milk and juice to accompany mealtime instead of snack time.  You'll hear us say "Water anytime, milk with meals, juices only on special occasions!"

 

Helpful links:

 

Infant and Toddler Nutrition | Nutrition | CDC

 

The Use and Misuse of Fruit Juice in Pediatrics | American Academy of Pediatrics

 

Sedation Dentistry:

Sedation dentistry refers to the use of sedation during dental treatment. Our office offers nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and general anesthesia at Watauga Medical Center.  In the future, we plan to expand our services to include oral conscious sedation and IV sedation in the office.

 

A consultation will help us determine which option is best.

 

Emergency Treatment:

While our goal is to prevent dental emergencies, we understand that the need for urgent dental care is sometimes necessary and can be a stressful experience for both parents and children. We strive to handle dental emergencies promptly and with compassion.

 

Special needs patients:

If you’re the parent or guardian of a child with disabilities, you’ll appreciate the support, skill and compassion found with our doctors and our office. We can help put your child on the path of good oral health with a preventative dental care plan customized to fit your child’s needs.

 

 

We are here for you

and your child.

Our goal is to exceed

your expectations.

 

From the time your child grows their first tooth until they are ready to move on to an adult dentist, our doctors and their team will help care for and protect your child’s smile. Because children are so different from adults, we take a unique approach to every patient. We treat our patients as if they were our own and we want each visit to be a fun, educational visit.